The National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) confirmed Tuesday that it was hacked by an unknown operative earlier this year, as Politico reported that thousands of emails from four NRCC senior aides had been exposed for months.
The breach was discovered in April, when the NRCC launched an investigation, but the committee did not reveal the hack to the public or Republican House leadership, Politico reported.
“The NRCC can confirm that it was the victim of a cyber intrusion by an unknown entity,” Ian Prior, a committee spokesman, told Politico. “The cybersecurity of the Committee’s data is paramount, and upon learning of the intrusion, the NRCC immediately launched an internal investigation and notified the FBI, which is now investigating the matter. To protect the integrity of that investigation, the NRCC will offer no further comment on the incident.”
House Speaker Paul Ryan, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, and Majority Whip Steve Scalise were all unaware of the breach until Politico reached out on Monday, according to the report. The NRCC kept the episode under wraps for fear of tipping off the culprit (or culprits) before they were found, a person familiar with the case told The Washington Post.
It’s unknown who was behind the hack, but an anonymous source told the Post the hacker was “sophisticated, based on their tactics and methods.”
The emails appear to have been merely monitored, as party officials told Politico there were no threats to NRCC leadership with exposure of the breached information.
While the content of the emails has not been made public, no NRCC donor information was revealed, says Axios.